Folks, we sure do have a real treat to start the week with. Think dark red colour palette, Autumn light and divine florals to name a few. Yes it’s time for WWW readers Chris and Elle’s wedding held on the 7th October 2017 at Millbridge Court in Surrey. Firstly I just have to thank The Springles for sending over these dreamy images today, they really capture the couple and the essence of their day so wonderfully. I mean those portraits in the woodland are just everything.
Then there was Elle’s wedding dress, which was so beautiful. It’s a design called Paradise by Ian Stuart, which is adorned in appliqué detail, didn’t Elle look incredible? Her loose and decadent bouquet worked so well with her bridal look too. So sumptuous. Chris and his groomsmen were all decked out in blue check tweed jackets and dark blue chinos. They looked really dapper indeed.
They wanted an American flavour to their day too, with a US inspired menu and Vagas style evening do. They also had a real statement of a butter cream cake, personalised ketchup and drink tokens as favours. Not to mention a band to keep the dance floor packed from WWW faves Warble Entertainment. All in all a fabulous celebration.
THE PROPOSAL | Chris took me to Dinton Pastures in Wokingham. It is one of our favourite little walks. He proposed over looking the lake on a bench. I couldn’t stop smiling and staring at my ring!
THE VISION | It was really important for us to have elements at our wedding which really displayed our personalities and for our wedding to be comfortable and not too rigid. We both wanted somewhere were we could spend our whole day as we did not want to change to different venues.
I work as an ecologist so I wanted something rustic yet Chris wanted modern. A lot of the barns I saw seemed dark which I did not want, I wanted light and airy yet with charm and character. I also wanted to bring the outside in and connect with the environment around us. However with the English weather I was sceptical of having an outdoors wedding.
THE PLANNING PROCESS | I had been planning my wedding a while on Pinterest. I had numerous Pinterest boards which came in handy finding vendors and for coming up with cute unique ideas. Chris wasn’t really keen on going to lots of venues, so he gave me a brief of what he wanted and then I did a lot of research. I put forward the best two options.
My sister also bought me a great wedding planning book which was a godsend, as I am old fashioned and like to write things down. It is also a nice keepsake now the weddings over.
I loved the whole process of planning our wedding from start to finish. We planned it in just over a year which I think was the right amount of time for us as any shorter would have been stressful and any longer I would have felt like it was dragging.
I would say the fact I did a lot of research prior to booking suppliers meant I got the best for us and could relax on the day knowing I had covered all bases. Planning is key to a wedding as you don’t want to miss anything and then wish you had it after the event.
Planning also helps you with the budget as you can work out pricing and try and haggle or wait for coupons and deals. For instance we waited until Tesco’s had 25% off wine before we bought in bulk. We had so much wine which our guests loved. Paying corkage worked out so much cheaper and we got a lot extra for it and the flexibility of having different alcohol.
BUDGET | £30,000
THE VENUE | Millbridge Court is located in the beautiful village of Frensham on the Surrey, Hampshire borders. Situated in the heart of the countryside, with the River Wey visible from the grounds and occasional visits from neighbouring cows and horses, it’s an idyllic spot. And we both instantly fell in love.
Driving to the venue it just looks like a nice house, but when you enter it opens up like a tardis, at the far end of the house are two large barns with massive windows bringing the Surrey Downs in to the room which is a real wow factor. This made styling easier as due to the picturesque windows I felt crowding too many decorations would detract from it.
Millbridge Court made the wedding lead up and day seamless they designate a wedding planner to us and they work tirelessly to make our day perfect. You feel like the only couple getting married there.
THE DRESS & ACCESSORIES | My dress was by Ian Stuart, Paradise, Honey and Ivory Colour.
Head piece was brought from Etsy Enze Bridal they design what you want from scratch. My hair piece was slightly wrong when it arrived but they fixed it as soon as I told them which was great.
I had my Granddad’s tie pin and a yellow angel for my Grandmother pinned to my bouquet as a personal touch and to keep them included in the day.
FINDING THE DRESS | I went to about 10 shops and tried on every style, I loved this part of the planning so don’t rush it. I knew instantly that it was my dress. It had little leaf appliqués all over it which was so unique and fitted my woodland rustic theme perfectly. I adored my dress it was so distinctive, I felt like a ‘real bride’. The dress was from Confetti and Lace in Lakeside.
GROOM’S ATTIRE | Moss Bros – blue cheque tweed jackets with dark blue chinos. We were going for a country chic look for the men. We bought all 8 suits and rented ties (red). Remember to haggle when buying. Dark red ties and hankies brought the autumn colours to life and went well with the changing tree leaves. Touches of gold lifted the two colours. Groomsmen included: Iain best man, Gareth bestman, David, Simon and Terry.
THE READINGS & MUSIC | We had a string quartet for the ceremony and reception which added a touch of glam. We walked down the aisle to ‘Halo’ by Beyoncé and out to ‘Everything’ by Michael Buble.
We had ‘The Lovely Other Dinosaur’ by Edward Monkton which I adapted to suit our characters. And the other poem was ‘Still and Settled Place’ by Edward Monkton.
We walked into our wedding breakfast to Lets Get Married by Jagged Edge.
The band was my biggest stress and music can really make or break a wedding. Most people only have YouTube clips to go on when booking a band so you do need to take a leap of faith. I went with Warble Entertainment as if anything happens to your band before your event they replace them with a similar one. We then chose Soul Fire; honestly if you are worrying about this I highly recommend them. They were amazing and had everyone up dancing from start to finish! They also had a great DJ list for when they were having their breaks.
Our wedding song which the band learnt was Army by Ellie Goulding.
BEAUTIFUL BRIDESMAIDS | My sister Ria was Maid of Honour she was pregnant so I managed to source a dress which matched the colour of the other dresses from Seraphine.
The other three girls, Laura, Jenny and Kate wore a dark red dress with leaf appliqués which matched my dress perfectly, the dresses were bought from Phase Eight occasions. I waited for a 25% off day to buy my dress to help save the pennies.
THE FLOWERS | My flowers were supplied by VFB Florist in Twyford. They did a beautiful wreath for my granddad’s funeral so I chose them to keep continuity so he was included in elements of our day. I have had our flowers preserved in a frame which I am so happy I did as it means in years to come I can still look at my bouquet.
THE CAKE | I let my mum have the lead on this so she felt included. She chose Clearly Cakes. We had four tiers and I chose a semi naked cake with flecks of gold leaf to tie in with my colour scheme, and the flavours included, cookies and cream, lemon curd, toffee and strawberries and champagne. It went down a storm, I was hoping to have some left but we only took home half of the top layer. I wasn’t really that interested in the cake but I am glad my mum forced me to invest in one because guests really enjoyed it so I would advise getting a good one. A family friend Karen did the beautiful sugar flowers as a wedding gift, this helped cut costs. I have kept the sugar flowers which are lovely keep sake.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER | I wanted two photographers as I wanted to see Chris get ready and see how his day was. We chose the wonderful Springles as I love their moody photos. They had photographed our venue once before so the images were on Pinterest. The Springles are a husband and wife duo, both Kat and Ash are so personable and lovely, they make you feel at ease straight away. My husband hates photos but they worked so well with him, I was so happy with the outcome. They often have the shot before you even know they are next to you, this means you can achieve some lovely natural photographs. I also loved that we were able to go to the woods for our couple shoot. The photos fitted with my theme and are so lovely to look back on. The Springles also do a slide show with your photos and set it to the music you had at your wedding, this was such a lovely touch and quite emotional watching back after the big day. I could not recommend this couple enough they were just FABULOUS form start to finish.
A tip is to make a Pinterest board and share it with your photographers so you get all the shots you want on the day.
THE DETAILS & DÉCOR | Tables: The eye is in the detail, and I got a lot of inspiration from Pinterest. As I work with contractors I collected large wood blocks for our centre pieces, my friend George and dad then sanded and stained them. I also had gold mason jars which I bought clear from Hobby Craft and sprayed gold, this saved me a fortune! I also bought large bottles and glued brown twine rope around them. I then went to The Range and bought little frames sprayed them gold to display our table names, my husband came up with naming our tables after trees. I rented our step ladder, milk churns and frames very cheaply from Fairly Vintage; they were very easy to deal with.
We decided to go different for our wedding meal and have an American Dinner menu as my partner is obsessed with burgers and Vegas so I wanted to incorporate this into our wedding. As a cute extra touch I ordered tomato ketchup labels with our name on. We had so many people get photos with them.
Our favours were coupons for the bar, I go to so many weddings where you are given favours you end up losing. I always enjoy a free drink so that’s what we gave our guests in the evening.
We had Prosecco and Rhubarb and Ginger gin, we got so many comments on it as it was a bit different for the reception drink. My Granddad grew Rhubarb so it was another way I could include him in my big day.
A fun thing we did which I loved was wrap a present on each table. We played a game which was a question for each table such as give the present to the youngest? We used the game as an ice breaker for the table. The present contained coloured apron and a chef’s hat. Each nominated table chef then went to the kitchen and brought out the desert and served to their table. It was a really cue interactive game, and great for photos!
Our friends Sophie and Tom supplied the sweet trolley and sweets as a wedding favour, I printed sweet bags as favours with our names on. It looked really cute and was another thing we could do to entertain and treat our gorgeous guests.
We carried the Vegas vibe into the evening and moved away from the woodland theme I had in the day. This meant we had different feels in the day and evening and incorporated both our personalities, it flowed really well. We had a photo booth with a green screen of Vegas and casino tables; they were a real hit with our guests and again something a bit different.
THE HONEYMOON | We went to Singapore, Bali and Lombok. I booked the flights through STA travel and the hotels mainly through Lombok Lodge. If you are thinking of going to Bali, I would recommend also going to Lombok as it is a lot quieter and so romantic. And you have to stay at Lombok Lodge! 9 rooms and 60 staff, it is unreal, the best hotel we have ever stayed at. I hardly ever recommend hotels as everyone likes different things, but this hotel was just out of this world.
MEMORABLE MOMENTS | Chris’s most memorable moment was coming down to greet the guests. He said he felt in a bubble upstairs changing with his groomsmen and the sound of all the guests really hit him when he entered the room.
My most memorable moment was just before I walked down the aisle. All of my bridesmaids had entered the room and I suddenly got nervous and welled up. I looked at my wonderful wedding planner Abbie (from Millbridge Court) and remember her just saying ‘breathe’, and then we started down the aisle.
ADVICE FOR OTHER COUPLES | Remember to have a contingency as little costs can sneak in at the end.
Don’t be afraid to get creative, our suppliers wanted to charge £2.10 per head for ketchup, which is why I came up with the personalised ketchup bottles, which turned out to be one of my favourite things!
Enjoy the planning, do not get too stressed as it goes so quickly and it is such a special time for you an your future husband to bond, so have fun with it, go to wedding fayres look at Pinterest and just enjoy the whole process.
The biggest thing for us was our guests, yes it’s your day but remember people have paid a lot to get there so make the day about them as well. The three most important elements of your wedding (other than the dress!) should be food, music and lots of alcohol. If you cant afford a free bar the drink vouchers as favours are a great option. It’s so satisfying getting positive feed back after the wedding. Happy guests make your wedding unforgettable!
CREDIT WHERE CREDIT IS DUE |
Our photographers gave us beautiful memories | The Springles
The string quartet were lovely and added the glamour | Estilo
We had a great caricature in the day to keep our guests entertained whilst we were having our photos | Drawn4u
Our cake was delicious and our family friend saved us a lot by making the lovely flowers, and we get to keep them! | Clearly Cake
Flowers looked beautiful | VFB Florist
The venue made everything run smoothly | Millbridge Court was so good throughout the whole process.
Food produced a personalised menu for us; the guests loved it as it was an alternative to your standard wedding meal | Kalm Kitchen
Honeymoon | Lombok Lodge gave us a trip of a life time.
Catherine Taylor did my make up and the bridesmaids, she was really reasonable and did such a good job, my make up stayed on all day. She listed to the brief and included a trial in her costings.
My hair dresser Jodie Adamson gave me an Elsa Plait which was unique and a style I had not seen on another bride. My Aunty Jen Cross did my bridesmaids and mums hair as a wedding favour and did a great job.
Huge thanks to Chris and Elle for sharing all about their super beautiful day xo Lou